50 million could be jobless in 2009: ILO
Geneva, Jan 29: Over 50 million more people could be unemployed by the end of 2009 due to the global recession, warned International Labour Organisation (ILO) on Wednesday, Jan 28.
The global unemployment in 2009 could increase over 2007 by a range of 18 million to 30 million workers, new estimates indicated. If the same situation continues more than 50 million would be rendered jobless, ILO said in a statement released.
That could raise the world's jobless total to 198 million, or 230 million people in the worst case scenario, according to the figures in the ILO's report, 'Global Employment Trends 2009'. According to the reports, in 2007, some 179 million people were out of work. "The ILO's message is realistic, not alarmist," Director-General Juan Somavia told reporters.
"We have to assume that we are now facing a global jobs crisis." Officials were more inclined to a middle range scenario of 30 million job losses for 2007-2009, raising the worldwide unemployment tally to 210 million.
Labour experts here believe the lowest scenario has already been overtaken. That could propel the global unemployment rate to an average of 6.5 per cent, or 7.1 per cent in the worst case, for this year, against 5.7 percent in 2007. The report indicated that 190 million people were jobless by the end of 2008 after 11 million jobs were shed around the world last year alone, based on a combination of official national data and estimates.
Somavia urged the Group of 20 leading industrial and emerging economies to examine measures to boost 'productive' investments, create jobs and bolster social protection, on top of helping financial institutions.
IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn on Monday, Jan 26 criticised the G20, saying they had made little progress in fighting the global financial crisis. The ILO figures indicated that developed economies would be hit the hardest with the fastest rise in unemployment rates, from an average of 5.7 per cent in 2007 up to 6.6-7.9 percent in 2009.
The report estimated that last year the developed economies and European Union failed to create jobs in 2008, while unemployment picked up sharply to 6.2 per cent, ending five consecutive years of decline.
But East Asia, which had the lowest regional unemployment rate at 3.5 per cent in 2007, was forecast to experience a jump to 4.5-5.5 percent in a year. The crisis could also push another 200 million workers into extreme poverty as they eke out a living in informal, underpaid and unstable work, especially in Africa and South Asia, the ILO predicted.
OneIndia News (With inputs from Agencies)